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Cascade Township Residential Wells (Cascade Township, Kent County)

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Please contact the Site Lead for the most up-to-date status of this site.

EGLE site lead

Brent Ritchie, or 616-581-1782.


Since March 2019, the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) has requested to sample approximately 475 residential drinking water wells in the area  “Trout Creek” (in the neighborhood east of the 36th Street exits off I-96, west of the Thornapple River), for PFAS as part of the ongoing investigation of potential PFAS contamination sources in Cascade Township. This area was selected due to its proximity to known and potential PFAS sources and local geologic features. Samples were collected from only those properties where EGLE was given permission; 364 samples were collected in five phases. 

To address PFAS contaminated drinking water in the Burger/Goodwood neighborhood (this Area of Interest), the City of Grand Rapids / Cascade Township / Gerald R. Ford International Airport (GFIA) have received the following funding to extend Grand Rapids municipal drinking water into the affected neighborhood totally $13.825 million:

  • June 2021, $5 million from the Consolidation and Contamination Risk Reduction (C2R2) program;
  • January 2022, GFIA received a $1.625 million grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC);
  • On June 10, 2022, it was announced that U.S. Representative Peter Meijer secured $7.2 million in the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA).

Results are summarized further down; PFAS was detected in 222 samples. Residential drinking water well results are compared to the new Part 201 cleanup criteria of PFOA 8 ppt and PFOS 16 ppt effective August 3, 2020.

Content posted October 2022.

Drinking water information

In addition to the exceedances of PFOS and PFOA there was one residential well that exceeded the maximum contaminant level of 6 ppt PFNA with a result of 9.1 ppt.

Residents have been notified of their results, and in response, the Kent County Health Department offered point-of-use filters to each household with a detection of any PFAS compound.

Through five sampling phases, EGLE has attempted to  sample all the  residential drinking water wells known to EGLE in the area south of 28th Street, west of the Thornapple River, east of the 36th Street exit off I-96, and north of the M-6 exit off I-96. Therefore, no additional residential drinking water well sampling will occur at this time.

NOTE: Residents previously sampled as part of the sampling efforts by Gerald R. Ford International Airport or by Lacks Industries will not be resampled. Residents who provided independent PFAS results that were non-detect will not be contacted.

This project is not associated with the Lack's Industries (Cascade) project or properties with residential drinking water wells north of 28th Street, east of the Thornapple River, west of the 36th Street exit off I-96 or south of the M-6 exit off I-96.

Through five sampling phases, EGLE has sampled 364 residential drinking water wells. PFAS was detected in more than 60 percent of results indicating a need to pursue a long-term solution, protective of public health for a large area. 




(no exceedance)

PFOA (> 8 ppt) or
PFOS (> 16 ppt)

Number of Results

204 121 39

Range Total Tested PFAS

Range Total Tested PFAS


> 0
to < 10

> 10
to < 100

> 100
to < 200

Number of Results

142 78 137 7

Anticipated activities

EGLE has begun to focus on pursuing a long-term solution that would consider all sampled and non-sampled drinking water wells south of 28th Street, west of the Thornapple River, east of the 36th Street exit off I-96 and north of the M-6 exit off I-96.

EGLE will also continue to evaluate all commercial activities near Cascade Township that have, or may have used, materials containing PFAS as part of their operations. In addition to the two known PFAS sources, Lack’s Industries – Cascade, and Gerald R. Ford International Airport (GFIA), EGLE is also evaluating the sampling results from EGLE’s Industrial Pre-treatment Program (IPP). The information gathered from the IPP identified other PFAS users in the area, but at locations without confirmed releases of PFAS-containing materials to the environment.

In addition, EGLE completed an internal geologic review of the area surrounding GFIA and concluded that the relationship of known PFAS conditions in the area and the local geology warranted further investigation in the area northeast of GFIA. Specifically, the review recommended that this be accomplished through private residential drinking water well sampling. 

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